Science

War in Ukraine: American big tech companies are involved – Science et Avenir

Distortions and other arrangements with Google’s government censorship in China have caused a lot of controversy since the 2000s where you’re connecting from. Amid the war in Donbass and Russia’s annexation of Crimea, Apple did its best not to alienate Moscow despite Ukrainian protests. On Apple Maps, Crimea was presented as Russian territory when the app was requested from Russia. At the same time, despite US sanctions, Microsoft continued to do business with Russian companies in Crimea.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine at the end of February 2022 ultimately shattered that fierce desire of the American tech giants, led by Facebook, Google, Apple, Microsoft, to stay out of the geopolitical competition. “These platforms were not really ready for war,” says Julien Nochetti, researcher at the Geode Center, data geopolitics and cyber conflict specialist. This topic was the subject of a conference at the European Cyber ​​Week in Rennes in mid-November 2022.

Facial recognition of war criminals

Apple tried to play for time, but in early March, the manufacturer blocked purchases from the AppStore and iTunes Store from Russia. YouTube has demonetized Russian state media, Sputnik and Russia Today. Google Maps has removed content that may pose a danger to the population of Ukraine (traffic data, attendance of public places), and has blocked the editing function that allows you to add information and comments to your maps. AirBnB suspended work in Russia and Belarus, allied with Moscow, and offered housing to Ukrainian refugees. Controversial firm Clearview AI gave Ukrainians its facial recognition technology for free to identify Russian war criminals, and Google also gave 150 Ukrainian organizations its technology for free to protect against denial-of-service attacks (a type of cyberattack that saturates an Internet service by sending it so many requests that it becomes unavailable).

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